California needs the best outcomes for the most people.
Who we are
Govern For California is the special interest for the public’s interest in the California State Legislature and on the statewide ballot. We engage with coalitions, legislators and decision makers who are committed to achieving the best outcomes for most residents. Meet our team →
Why we’re here
Californians can only achieve stability, prosperity and equality when the public’s interests are elevated over special interests. California is struggling because the public’s needs are overshadowed by special interests at the cost of quality public services for all. Our state government is responsible for providing public services, yet the quality of public schools, transit systems, healthcare, and public safety services are in decline. We know this because the data shows it, and through our lived experience as Californians. Public schools are underperforming, crime is rising, homelessness is endemic, and public health outcomes are diminished. This is not a new phenomenon — it’s decades in the making. Over the past two decades, special interests have secured a bigger voice in Sacramento than the general public. Today, policies and laws that serve the public struggle to make it through our lawmaking and elections processes.
Who’s left out? The majority of Californians. And that’s where GFC comes in. To make decisions that benefit most Californians, legislators need persistent support long after elections are won. And to keep bad initiatives from becoming law, there must be organized opposition that’s focused on governance for the many, not the few. Until GFC was formed in 2011, there was no organized alternative to special interest funding nor organized protection of lawmakers who voted and served in the public interest. Govern For California provides this support through education, data and giving, so legislators don’t have to rely on special interests once in office and the initiative process is better protected from self-interested actors. Reliability of support matters, so GFC has organized a network of persistent donors and maintains a large and permanent presence in Sacramento, just like special interests have done for decades.
Our constituency is you
GFC champions the vast majority of Californians who are impacted by poor public education, healthcare, safety and transportation services, but aren’t represented by special interests at the Capitol nor in elections. GFC pushes back on laws that help the few, not the many, and elevates ideas that are squarely in the public’s interest. If a proposed law or initiative impacts public services, it’s in our wheelhouse.
We are non-partisan
GFC supports legislative candidates across the political spectrum. We back leaders who are open to intelligent reforms, possess financial literacy, are collaborative and inclusive, and are courageous enough to govern in the public interest (and in the interest of their constituents).
We back a broad range of issues
Here are just a few of the issues we’ve worked on: Improving student well-being and performance, giving parents more choice over their children’s education, passing state budgets that don’t over-commit benefits at the cost of the social safety net, reforming our criminal justice system, securing better health outcomes for low-income, Black, and Latino communities, and fighting corporate carve-outs.
We are transparent
Our membership of over 1,000 donors support operating expenses by donating to our 501(c)(4) non-profit organization as well as directly to legislators, candidates for the legislature, and 18 GFC Courage Committee chapters. The chapters are independent political action committees that donate to legislators and candidates. This giving structure adheres to the direction given by the Fair Political Practices Commission. Political donations are publicly disclosed and limited by law to $9,100 per donor per chapter per calendar year.